So you’re getting sexy with someone, and things are getting heated, but, er, certain body parts are not responding, if you know what I mean.

Definitely the right thing to do is to panic. Just kidding. Honestly, there’s no reason to freak out. Play it cool, and you’ll start to realize it’s not such a big deal.

Things happen; people get nervous. There doesn’t even need to be a reason. It’s an unexpected thing that more people than you’d think run into. While not ideal, it is okay. Here’s what you can do:


Try taking a step back. In a way, hit the “reset” button on the moment. Sex feels good, but foreplay is what gets you hot, so slow things down.

You can even literally take a step back, look at your partner, admire their body, take a breath and start again.

If that doesn’t help you get up and running, use your other tools! Get it? Tool?

Seriously though, you have hands and lips and a tongue and, of course, your imagination.

You absolutely are capable of pleasing your partner in other ways, so focus on those.

Turning your attention to your partner will allow you to stop worrying about yourself. Maybe your situation will fix itself. In the meantime, get off by seeing your partner’s pleasure as you spoil them.

Plus, if you manage to give your partner a good enough time, they will absolutely not care about whatever snag you hit beforehand. All they’ll remember is how enthusiastic you were to give them head. The goal is to give your partner such a good time that they lose all sense of reality.

And remember, struggling to get or keep an erection happens.

It could be caused by nervousness, the overuse of porn, masturbating with a death grip or, most importantly, it could be for no reason at all.

Blaming yourself will not help your situation, and neither will embarrassment. It happens; just try to play it cool.


It’s really important for you to remember that this just happens sometimes. Do not assume that it’s your fault. It’s not. Do, however, realize how difficult a situation this is for your penis-possessing partner, and help them through it.

Tell them it’s okay. And after that, convince them that you mean it. Smile and kiss them and prove to them that you don’t think it’s a big deal. Doing so will show them that they shouldn’t think it’s a big deal either. Because it isn’t.

If you recognize that they’re struggling, suggest to them another way to please you. Literally bail them out of the situation.

You can eliminate whatever misguided guilt they inevitably feel by requesting that they pleasure you in a way that does not require their penis.

Ask them to give you a back massage or go down on you. They get to stop thinking about their penis and you get spoiled; it’s a win-win.

In the end, you only have control over so much. Make the best of what you can, and everything will be fine.

Armstrong is a member of the class of 2016.

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